Monday, 13 January 2014

{ self-control } - the biggest word in my dictionary for 2014

I have always had a problem with self-control.

Apparently there was a marshmallow-experiment (my kind of experiment!) done in the 70's at the Stanford university in California. It involved three hundred 3 - 5 year olds and they did a series of studies on delayed gratification (NOT my kind of experiment anymore!). Every little one got the choice: you can immediately get one marshmallow or you can wait and get two. I mean really? That's plain mean. What is all boiled down to was your success as an adult...

If my parents allowed me to take part in such an experiment I would have taken them to court. {Evidence of no self-control}. Secondly, I would have insisted on a marshmallow now AND later. {More evidence of no self-control}.

According to Wikipedia the word { self-control } is the ability to control one's emotions, behavior and desires in order to obtain some reward, or avoid some punishment. In psychology it is sometimes called self-regulation. Self-control is essential in behavior to achieve goals and to avoid impulses and/or emotions that could prove to be negative. Big words for me! 

When I started my research for this blog post (please don't get excited and think that ALL my posts get researched! Sometimes the only '"research" involved is Googling and Pinterest...), I didn't realize how much could come from simply typing "self-control meaning" into the Google Chrome omnibox...

Self-control, or rather my lack thereof, has been an issue for me for as long as I can remember but lately its just been weighing heavily on my heart to actually, actively DO something about it... The Free Dictionary has probably the best description of them all { self-will }: Stubborn adherence to one's own will, desires, etc. and that's exactly what I am - STUBBORN. Full stop. Non-negotiable.

So towards the end of last year, when I pulled on my skinny jeans and looked in the mirror (don't know about the other ladies but that's how I get dressed: first the bottom part, look in the mirror, face-palm, then top part, look in the mirror, raised eyebrow) and there it was: a muffin top that would make a Mugg & Bean muffin green with envy! It's unfortunately part of my genes I could easily say 'cos Ouma Hartman was more of a mosbolletjie than a plank - and our genes make it sit right around the tummy area... or I could just really admit to it; NO self-control. And that was it for me! I admitted I have a problem and decided to really take control of my stubborn adherence to my bizarre eating habits and do something about it. The things is that I don't eat so much, I just eat the wrong things at the wrong time. I will be busy at home at night and realise at 21:00 that I haven't eaten something, and out of pure laziness I would have cereal for dinner. And a chocolate for breakfast.

Trust me when I say that it didn't come easy. Who in their right mind decides in the silly season, the time of trifles and turkey, to start living a healthy life? Well I decided to. And here's what I did:
* Stopped taking tea in my sugar.
* Stocked up on healthy snacks - there was not a single chocolate in my fridge, nor a hint of chips in the pantry. Fruit in the fridge and nuts in the pantry.
* I made most of my main meals salad.
* I tripled my water intake.
* When I felt like something, I ate it - but in moderation.
* And I prayed about self-control. A lot.

And that was all it took!!! Last week I pulled on my pair of skinnies and looked in the mirror. And looked again. And it was gone! I couldn't believe it. I think that I am one of a lucky few that doesn't have to start the new year with a diet. I will simply continue with my healthy life.

Self-control will therefore be the biggest word in my dictionary for 2014. Because I also have a problem with Ipanema flip-flops, Mongoose handbags, the list goes on... And as I conquer them one by one, I will keep you posted. And motivated.

Now excuse me while I go have a marshmallow. Or two :p They are calling me from the pantry! NOT!!!


  1. A good laugh yet very educational. A perfect metaphor for so many other areas of our lives!

  2. Well done my Welgie! Xxx 5 star for Miss Milly! Xxx